Tips from Steve: Delay Purge – What Is It and Should I Use It?

We are proud to introduce a series of blog post from one of our biggest customer, Steve Putnam. In these articles, Steve shares his experience and best practices on utilizing CloudBerry Managed Backup as a Managed Service Provider.

In this article, Steve explains how to configure a delay purge for files that are infrequently changed and avoid old versions purge after file update.

One of the things that led us to choose CloudBerry Managed Backup Service (MBS) software to handle the backup needs of our 100+ customers was its rare combination of simplicity and flexibility.  Usually, products with a lot of features and settings are very complex and difficult to navigate, but with MBS and the Wizard driven interface, you get the best of both worlds.

But it is not always clear which of the myriad of settings are critical or just “nice to have” for edge cases that require some special handling.   This article focuses on one of the settings in the Retention Policy Panel – Delay Purge – which is essential for protecting the most common cause of restores –the accidental deletion or corruption of a file.

Our standard cloud retention is 90 days for old versions and deleted files.

Most users of CloudBerry Backup I have spoken with simply set the “Delete versions older than” parameter to xx days and that is it.

And for files that get changed every day, that works fine.  But what happens when someone modifies a file that was created a year ago?  The new version gets backed up that night, but the original version, with its year-old creation date, would get purged right away. And it does not matter whether you select “modified date” or “backup date” as the criteria, they are both more than 90 days old and thus subject to immediate purging.

The Delay purge feature addresses this issue by delaying the purging of the old version from Backup storage until the number of days in your setting have passed.

The screenshot shows the standard setting that we use to ensure that any file that is modified, regardless of its modified/creation date, will have the old version held for 90 days.

Notice that we set the retention period to 1 day and the Delay purge to 90 days.

The version is marked eligible for purging after one day but is held for an additional 90 days and then purged.

If we set both to 90 days it would result in frequently changed files having an effective retention period of 180 days, far longer than we commit to for our clients.

Some of our clients in the Accounting & Tax business only modify documents a few times a year and thus may not discover a corrupted or missing file for six months or more.  For these businesses, we offer a 13-month retention period for a small additional monthly fee to allow them to retrieve old versions or deleted files from over a year ago.

In summary, the Delay Purge feature of the  CloudBerry Backup software is one of the essential settings to maximize the protection of your client’s data.

About Steve Putnam:

Steve retired in 2013 from a Fortune 500 firm as  Director of Storage and Backup, after spending 40 years in IT.  He now manages the Cloud Solutions Services for The PC Wizard, a small Managed Service Provider (MSP) owned by his son, who started the company in 1995 when he was only 15 years old.  In this new role, Steve has more time to devote to exploring new technologies, as well as to engage in one of his passions – writing technical articles to assist others in maximizing their use of Cloud-based solutions.